149

Terry Silverlight: Terry Silverlight

Douglas Payne By

Sign in to view read count


Drummer Terry Silverlight was first heard on brother Barry Miles's White Heat album in 1971 when he was only 14 years old. The two have worked together steadily since. But Silverlight has also logged many miles as rhythm man on jazz dates (Mel Torme, Eric Kloss, Phil Woods), fusion records (George Benson, Jonathon Butler, Tom Grant), the Top 40 hits of Freddie Jackson and Billy Ocean as well as many commercials, TV shows and film scores too. Indeed, there are probably few, if any, styles the drummer hasn't already successfully tackled.

On his self-titled solo debut, Silverlight opts for an instrumental fusion sound that fondly recalls a style that's at least a decade old. Such groups as Weather Report, Steps Ahead, Pieces of a Dream and Special EFX patented these formulas. But this style - which evolved from "jazz rock" in the 1970s - has since degenerated into snoozy adult contemporary music that's purposely easy to listen to (or ignore). Clearly, Silverlight invests his passion in this music and is determined to bring back some of the fire to which fusion aspired.

This set finds Silverlight exploring a variety of often up-tempo moods — benefited mostly by the muscularity the drummer brings to his melodic originals. There's little extraverted improvisation (with the nice exception of brother Barry's lovely solo on "Redwinged Sparrow"). But the musicians contribute a positive warmth to Silverlight's glowing moods. There's the celebratory Zawinul-like groove of "Someday Beneath The Sun" and "Soul Mate," the Tony Williams force-of-nature rock of "Taking Twos" and "Soul Mate," the snaky Jeff Lorber Fusion (old school) dance grind of "Planet Rhythm" and an Earl Klugh funk to "Let There Be Silverlight" (featuring guitarist Jeff Ciampa).

The two reed players (Bob Kenmotsu, Danny Wilensky) exchange leads, investing similar affinities for the Grover Washington sound (most apparent on slower tempos like "The Love of My Life" and "Peace on Earth"). Silverlight's keen rhythmic sensibilities make it disappointing to hear the occasional drum machine. But the drummer's imaginatively constructed compositions never leave the listener to linger long on such distractions.

Silverlight, whose variety of talents here will impress listeners in and out of the often-binding fusion genre, has crafted a fine debut. Whether he chooses to explore be-bop — or even acid jazz - next, he's got the chops (and the understanding) to carry it through with conviction. Terry Silverlight is proof.

Songs:Someday Beneath The Sun; The Love Of My Life; On Fire; Planet Rhythm; Magic Rainbow; Soul Mate; Taking Twos; Peace on Earth; Let There Be Silverlight; Redwinged Sparrow.

Players:Terry Silverlight: drums, synthesizers and synth programming; Barry Miles: piano on "On Fire" and "Redwinged Sparrow"; Bob Kenmotsu, Danny Wilensky: Soprano and tenor sax; Jeff Ciampa: acoustic guitar.

Title: Terry Silverlight | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: CEI Cymekob


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Elusive CD/LP/Track Review Elusive
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 23, 2017
Read Transitions CD/LP/Track Review Transitions
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: September 23, 2017
Read Door Girl CD/LP/Track Review Door Girl
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: September 23, 2017
Read Incidentals CD/LP/Track Review Incidentals
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 23, 2017
Read Heart Knows CD/LP/Track Review Heart Knows
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 22, 2017
Read Jersey CD/LP/Track Review Jersey
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 22, 2017
Read "The Joy of Being" CD/LP/Track Review The Joy of Being
by John Sharpe
Published: April 12, 2017
Read "Shovel Down" CD/LP/Track Review Shovel Down
by Doug Collette
Published: December 18, 2016
Read "Strykin’ Ahead" CD/LP/Track Review Strykin’ Ahead
by John Kelman
Published: September 2, 2017
Read "Dialectrical" CD/LP/Track Review Dialectrical
by John Sharpe
Published: June 19, 2017
Read "Oaktree" CD/LP/Track Review Oaktree
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: March 28, 2017
Read "Which Craft?" CD/LP/Track Review Which Craft?
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 28, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.